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IndustryVideo games
FoundersJustin Yuan
Yap Chun Kee
Key people
  • Xu Zhenhua (CEO)
ProductsMobile Legends: Bang Bang
Mobile Legends Adventure
Sweet Crossing:
Number of employees
750[1] (2021[2])

Shanghai Moonton Technology Co. Ltd. (Chinese: 上海沐瞳科技有限公司; pinyin: Shànghǎi mù tóng kējì yǒuxiàn gōngsī), commonly known as Moonton Games, is a Chinese multinational video game developer and publisher owned by the Nuverse subsidiary of ByteDance and based in Shanghai, China. It is best known for the mobile multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game Mobile Legends: Bang Bang released in July 2016.[5]


Moonton Games was founded in 2015. The company was initially called YoungJoy Technology Limited.[6][better source needed]

Moonton Games' first video game, the tower defense (TD) game Magic Rush: Heroes, was released on 6 April 2015.[7]

Mobile Legends began development when following the completion of Magic Rush: Heroes.[7] Mobile Legends was released as Mobile Legends: 5v5 MOBA in 2016,[8] and became popular in Southeast Asia, notably in Indonesia and Malaysia, where it was the most-downloaded free mobile game app among iPhone users in 2017.[9][10] The game is distributed by Elex Tech in the United States.[8]

Riot Games suspected that Mobile Legends: 5v5 MOBA infringed on the intellectual property League of Legends, and demanded that Google remove the game from Google Play and App Store. Moonton Games removed the game before Google could act and eventually relaunched it as Mobile Legends: Bang Bang on 9 November 2016.[11][12] In July 2017, Riot Games filed a lawsuit against MOONTON Games over copyright infringement, citing similarities between Magic Rush and Mobile Legends against League of Legends.[13] The case was dismissed by Central District Court of California in the United States on account of forum non conveniens.[14]

Tencent, the parent of Riot Games, followed with a separate lawsuit in Shanghai No.1 Intermediate People's Court against Xu Zhenhua - previously a senior Tencent employee - for violating non-competition agreements.[15] Tencent won the lawsuit in July 2018 and was awarded a settlement of $2.9 million (¥19.4 RMB million).[14]

On 22 March 2021, the developer of TikTok, BABE, Resso and Lark ByteDance, through its video game subsidiary Nuverse, acquired Moonton Games for US$4 billion. ByteDance reportedly won over a bid from Tencent.[4][3]

List of products[edit]

Video games[edit]

Year Title Genre(s) Platform(s)
2015 Magic Rush: Heroes Tower defense Android, iOS


2016 Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Multiplayer online battle arena
2019 Mobile Legends: Adventure Side-scrolling role-playing
2020 Mobile Legends: Pocket N/A (Mobile Simulator App)
Sweet Crossing: Snake

Television series[edit]

Title Years Network
Legends of Dawn: The Sacred Stone 2021–present WeTV and Iflix (International)
TV9 (Malaysia)
NET. (Indonesia)

Kapamilya Channel & A2Z (Philippines)


Mobile Legends: Bang Bang is a minor revision of Mobile Legends: 5v5 MOBA, but was considered a separate product in the 44-page lawsuit filed by Riot Games against Moonton Games.[16]


  1. ^ a b "About MOONTON". Moonton. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  2. ^ Moonton Games (2021). "About Us".
  3. ^ a b "ByteDance acquires gaming studio Moonton at around $4 billion valuation: sources". Reuters. 22 March 2021. Retrieved 28 April 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  4. ^ a b "TikTok's parent company ByteDance acquired Mobile Legends developer Moonton". Mobile Gaming Hub. 2021-03-22. Retrieved 2021-03-23.
  5. ^ Sheany (9 November 2018). "Game Developers Should Focus on Each Country's Unique Culture: Moonton Chief Executive". Jakarta Globe. Nusa Dua. Retrieved 23 December 2019.
  6. ^ "Is Mobile Legends A Chinese Game? Here Is Which Country Made Mobile Legends". Mobile Mode Gaming. 19 June 2020. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  7. ^ a b 白鲸出海 (26 November 2018). "沐瞳科技创始人袁菁解读《无尽对决》:从一天推广费亏30万美金到成为印尼国民手游". 卖家之家 (in Chinese). Retrieved 30 May 2020. 2015 年,沐瞳科技研发出了他们的第一款游戏,叫做《Magic Rush:Heroes》(魔法英雄),Google Play 和 Apple store 都在全球进行了推荐,巅峰时期的收入达到了一个月 900 多万美金。“这算是成功了。”袁菁说道。。。。在《Magic Rush:Heroes》这款游戏上,沐瞳科技积累了很多经验。首先,他们每一周都给用户提供新的体验、新的内容。其次,他们想各种办法去适应,迎合当地市场的文化、宗教甚至是移动网络。比如,在用户打赢游戏后,通常会出现“恭喜你赢了!”这几个字。。。
  8. ^ a b Batchelor, James (12 July 2017). "Riot Games suing Chinese developer behind League of Legends clone". Retrieved 23 December 2019.
  9. ^ Ismail, Izwan (7 December 2017). "Here is Apple's list of top apps in Southeast Asia for 2017". New Straits Times. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  10. ^ Harris, Iain (20 July 2018). "Moonton's popular MOBA Mobile Legends plunders $200m in global revenues". Pocket Steel Media Ltd. Retrieved 23 December 2019.
  11. ^ "Riot Games sues developers of Mobile Legends". Rappler. July 11, 2017.
  12. ^ "Riot Games files lawsuit against League of Legends knocked-off". GGWP. 11 July 2017.
  13. ^ "Riot sues Mobile Legends's developers". 11 July 2017.
  14. ^ a b Mickunas, Aaron (18 July 2018). "Riot Games parent Tencent wins $2.9 million in lawsuit against Moonton CEO". Dot Esports. Archived from the original on 11 July 2019. Retrieved 24 November 2019.
  15. ^ "Tencent case and risks in non-compete commitments". Vantage Asia. 2018-12-21. Retrieved 2020-08-21.
  16. ^ Massaad, Jay (2017-07-11). "Riot Games targets supposed League of Legends knockoffs in lawsuit". Esports Insider. Retrieved 2020-06-15.